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Were they fleeing Religious Persecution?

Were they purged from their own country and sent to the colonies as prisoners?

Were they fleeing hunger and poverty?

Were they seeking their fortune?

Were they seeking a better life for their children?

Were they fleeing tyranny?

Were they brought here against their will as slaves?

How were they welcomed? Like the Irish? With the whip on the cotton plantations as slaves?

Do you even know, and do you even care?

The US is a nation of immigrants, and how were the Native Americans treated during its creation, do you fear their fate?

My Mother's family emigrated from Western France in the 1600's to Canada as trappers, my father's family from Ireland fleeing the famine in 1849. They settled in the North Eastern US and Quebec as farmers. The new world offered hope and survival.

Written on that colossal beacon of hope gifted by the French celebrating our enlightenment and liberty are these words:

Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
"Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries she
With silent lips. "Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

~Emma Lazarus

It would be good on this day of celebrating our independence we remember why we are here. I am in spirit, if not in body, celebrating our nation in my Mother's historic home.

It would be good if those denigrating and spitting hatred at immigrants today remember how and why they and their ancestors arrived here in the first place.

Remembering why we are make us who we are.

12:19 AM PT: I have not included how Native Americans feel about this because I do not have that right. I hope there is a diary from one of the community on how they treat this day.

11:42 AM PT: Thank you for all your stories, I have already read most of them but cannot reply to each and every one. I will treasure this diary.



Originally posted to LaFeminista on Thu Jul 03, 2014 at 10:48 PM PDT.

Also republished by Genealogy and Family History Community.

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